Do You Know How Much Your State Spends On Fishing?

By: Joseph Simonds on February 14, 2019
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how much does your state spend on fishing

I don’t think I need any more reasons to love fishing more than I already do (I mean, I quit my job and sold everything I had to start a fishing company…), but after seeing the insane economic benefits anglers bring to the American economy, I think I might have another reason.

According to research gathered by the American Sportfishing Association and Southwick Associates, anglers support 802,000 jobs and produce $125 billion (that’s billion, with a B!) in economic output by going fishing.

Also, anglers contributed $1.6 billion (again with a B) to conservation efforts.

You can see the full results of the research in the state breakdown here, and the congressional district breakdown here, but for your enjoyment and convenience, we posted some interesting stats below.

Top 3 Fishing States By Money Spent, Population Of Anglers, Jobs Supported And Economic Output

speckled sea trout

Most money spent on fishing:

#1: Florida, $4.2B

#2: Texas, $4.1B

#3: California, $2.9B

Highest population of anglers:

#1: Florida, 4.1M

#2: Texas, 4.09M

#3: Michigan, 2.7M

Most jobs supported:

#1: Florida, 54,785 jobs

#2: Texas, 46,593 jobs

#3: California, 37,001 jobs

Most economic output:

#1: Texas, $6.9B

#2: Florida, $6.8B

#3: California, $5.2B

Download The Full Breakdown

For the full breakdown by state, click here [PDF].

For the full breakdown by congressional district, click here [PDF].

Now you may be wondering, why did they create this awesome report?

To help educate members of our Congress!

Here’s a quote from the ASA’s Government Affairs VP, Mike Leonard:

“For members of Congress, identifying jobs and the economic impact in their districts is always a prime concern. By identifying recreational fishing’s economic impact at the Congressional district level, we can clearly show members of Congress that recreational fishing in their district or state is a tremendous economic driver and job creator.”

The ASA did an awesome thing here by taking these numbers and breaking them down into easy-to-digest infographics for our members of Congress.

You can’t make it any easier for them to understand the importance of fishing in their district.


flounder from north carolina artificial reef

In addition to our genuine love of fishing, this is why we do what we do.

We teach people how to catch more fish (and enjoy fishing more) so they can keep fueling this monstrous job and money producing machine for our country.

Without fishing, 802,000 people would be out there looking for jobs.

(Likely more boring jobs…)

And without fishing, conservation agencies would be short $1.6B.

It’s our responsibility as anglers to keep this machine going for the good of our country.

So the next time your wife asks why you fish so much, tell her it’s because you’re an American and you’re supporting the economy.

How does your state stack up?

Are you surprised at these numbers?

Let us know by leaving a comment below!

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Then you’ve got to see this free webinar training!

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Steven Pepus
1 year ago

…just wanted to add my 2 cents…fishing licenses in CA are more money, which to me was no big deal, but…and this sucks…they are yearly…so, buying a license in any month expires on Jan 31…even if u buy one in Dec., living here in NC with a truly year-long license is totally common sense!

Steven Pepus
1 year ago
Reply to  Steven Pepus

…oops, typo there, licenses in CA. expire on Dec. 31…and I know for a fact that people don’t buy licenses in CA for that simple fact…interesting that the article says, for example, there are over 2 million anglers in CA, but it doesn’t say how many fishing licenses were sold…food for thought.

Justin Franklin
1 year ago

I know Florida is great and they’re leading the way in a lot of these categories but they have more coastline than any other state. Now I’m from Texas, “the stars at night are big and bright”, and we are nipping at the heels of the Floridians. I think by next year we can take the top spots. I know I’m going to do my best to get out there and keep feeding the machine, Salt Strong for life.